Guthrie talks about how 2nd District might shrink in redistricting

03/02/2011 06:07 PM

After the U.S. Census Bureau releases Kentucky’s 2010 data later this spring, 2nd District U.S. Rep. Brett Guthrie said he hopes to give his input on how the state legislature will re-draw the boundaries of his district.

Guthrie, a Republican from Bowling Green, said he thinks it’s a bit odd that Congress is one of the few legislative bodies in the world that doesn’t decide its own district boundaries.

He said on Pure Politics that he hopes to retain as much of the 19 counties and parts of two others that he represents.

“I’m certainly going to voice my concerns to my legislators and hopefully be engaged in a dialogue, and I think our input would be valuable,” Guthrie said. “I would like to keep mine as intact as I can. That’s my objective.”

Even though Owensboro in Daviess County has leaned Democratic in several of the recent elections, Guthrie said he expects to keep it in the 2nd district.

“Well I don’t want to lose Owensboro. Owensboro has always become a big political debate every time we’ve re-districted. I enjoy Daviess County, it’s a great place to represent. And it’s my objective… to keep Daviess County in the second (district).”

But with growing areas such as Fort Knox in Hardin County, Bullitt County and Bowling Green, he acknowledged the district will have to shrink.

Guthrie also discussed the planned expansion of I-65, government spending on road projects and whether the gas tax should be relaxed as oil prices spike because of turmoil in the Middle East:

The redistricting process begins after the U.S. Census numbers are released. More than half of the states have received their detailed population numbers but Kentucky’s hasn’t been released. In January, Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth talked on Pure Politics about his expectations for the redistricting process.

The objective is to keep roughly the same number of constituents in each of Kentucky’s six congressional districts. Redistricting has become very political in Kentucky’s history. And Guthrie said his experience as a former legislator may help him plead his case.

“There’s a lot of questions about who controls re-districting. I’ve got a lot of friends in the state legislature, and it’s their job. But I hope I’ll be able to give my input,” Guthrie said.

- Ryan Alessi

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